Breaking it down
Quarterback: It's fairly clear, Northwestern is openly searching for a quarterback. The Wildcats have offers out to Gunner Kiel and Bilal Marshall—both who are highly unlikely to become ‘Cats. NU has also missed out on Tyler O'Connor and Patton Robinette. Now, Northwestern is taking their next step carefully. With time, an offer could come to another gunslinger.
Running back: Malin Jones was locked up early, but Northwestern is hoping to add a second running back for this class. NU has offers out to William Mahone, Anthony Wales, Traveon Henry, Lakeith Walls, and Alden Hill. Only Hill has ruled out the Wildcats. Excluding Hill, Northwestern has a decent shot at any of these running backs.
Wide receiver: Mike McHugh remains Northwestern's sole wide receiver commit. The Wildcats still have offers out to a number of receivers, but none of those offered receivers has expressed strong interest. NU is likely to offer another receiver after losing out on Conner Crane and Kodi Whitfield two weeks ago.
Tight end: With Jack Schwaba committed to the ‘Cats, it's unlikely that Northwestern will pursue another tight end. NU still has an offer out to one tight end—Scout's top-rated TE Kent Taylor. With Schwaba locked up, don't expect NU to look for a second tight end.
Offensive line: Northwestern was hoping to add four offensive linemen for this recruiting class and they were able to do so in the middle of June. When Adam DePietro and Eric Olson committed at the same time, they locked up the Wildcats' line for the 2012 class. Northwestern has not offered any linemen since they received verbals from their third and fourth o-line commits. Don't expect that to change.
Defensive line: The one listed offensive lineman who Northwestern still pursues is Pickerington (OH) guard Pat Elflein, who Northwestern hopes to add as a defensive line recruit. The Wildcats are still pushing for five-star DT Tommy Schutt, four-star DT Sheldon Day, and three-star DT Greg Kuhar. On the ends, NU has offers out to Taiwan Johnson, Trace Clark, Guito Evilus, and Julien Obioha. With DE Dean Lowry locked up, the Wildcats are likely to add one more defensive end.
Linebacker: The Wildcats are not looking to add any middle linebackers for this class. They have offers out to outside linebackers Ifeadi Odenigbo, Nyeem Wartman, and one listed MLB, Quanzell Lambert—likely to play outside linebacker in college. Each of these are highly-touted prospects who Northwestern is pushing for.
Defensive backs: Though two safeties have committed, Northwestern is still searching for more defensive backs—even safeties. Pat Fitzgerald has always had a philosophy of recruiting players, not positions. With that, the Wildcats continue to recruit safety prospects with a likelihood of moving one to cornerback. Joseph Jones and Dan Vitale are the Wildcats' two safety commits. NU still has offers out to six safeties and three cornerbacks. Look for more to come down the road.
Specialists: With long snapper Chris Fitzpatrick locked up, NU is done searching for a long snapper. In the past, they have hinted to adding a kicker to the 2012 class. With one specialist secured, it remains unseen whether the Wildcats will add another.
There's been much attention paid to four-star linebacker Ifeadi Odenigbo, and rightfully so. Odenigbo is still very high on Northwestern, but Stanford, Notre Dame, Ohio State, and California also stand out. He penciled in the end of summer as commitment time but that admitted, he's not sure of that just yet.
Aside from Odenigbo, a few other prospects may also be making their decision soon.
Providence Catholic (IL) offensive lineman Ryan Ward—brother of Northwestern's Patrick Ward—is coming close to decision time. Northwestern, Iowa, and others are very much in the mix. William Mahone is another standout prospect who may be nearing decision time soon. A new junior offered
Northwestern offered their fourth prospect from the 2013 class and the second running back. Katy (TX) High School RB Adam Taylor joined Ty Isaac as junior running backs that the Wildcats have offered. Quarterback Matthew Alviti and linebacker Henry Poggi also hold offers from Northwestern.
Catching up with Alviti
Speaking of Matthew Alviti, PurpleWildcats.com spoke with the junior-to-be after Maine South's 7-on-7 held on Wednesday. Alviti was very impressive throughout the afternoon. He is undoubtedly the real deal. Northwestern has placed themselves in a good position with the 2013 prospect.
Alviti said he speaks with Northwestern's Mick McCall along with Pat Fitzgerald on a regular basis. He also mentioned being "15 minutes from home" as a major plus that Northwestern offers. You can see the video feature by clicking here.
A confirmed camper
East Ridge (FL) High School running back Jerami Singleton confirmed he will be one of many campers at Northwestern's final one-day camp, which will be held on July 27th. Northwestern is showing Singleton plenty of interest, but want to see his ACT score come up. If the score rises and he stands out at camp, and offer may come. To see the story on Singleton, click here.
Chris Purple Wildcats will be at Northwestern for a football camp on Saturday. This camp is not run through Northwestern, though I wouldn't be too surprised if Coach Fitzgerald is in attendance.
This camp is the Position Tech football camp, which is being run by a number of Chicago Bears. Hunter Hillenmeyer, Charles Tillman, Rashied Davis, and a few other Bears will be at Ryan Field. I'll have some coverage from this event.